In order to make the planning process easier, Conference and Event Services (CES) has come up with terms to help differentiate between the three most usual types of programs requested. They are:
- Meeting—meaning a gathering on behalf of a department, student club, or organization; usually a small gathering that does not require a great deal of set up, support, or arrangements
- Conference—any meeting or event that will involve overnight housing for guests in Seattle University accommodations (summer only)
- Event—any gathering that is not a meeting and not a conference
When working with a CES staff member, it helps to let him or her know what type of program you are planning.
Classroom space on campus is scheduled through the Conference & Event Services office after the Registrar releases the classrooms for such scheduling. This is usually near the middle of the quarter prior to the one being opened for scheduling.
Requests for scheduling non-classroom space are accepted on a first request basis. However, confirmation of the event being scheduled is usually given:
- Two (2) years or longer in advance of the event for Academic and University Administration events or large-scale, traditional Student Events
- One (1) year in advance of the event for less imperative University events
- Nine (9) months in advance for hosted events
- Six (6) months in advance of the event for Non-University events
Conference & Event Services reserves the right to substitute facilities for the space(s) reserved should the need arise.
Requests may be made farther out than these guidelines, but the reservations will be entered as “tentative” until the official guidelines come into play.
Reservation requests may be made online via our Event Request Form, or requests for events with very simple needs may be made by telephone at (206) 296-5620.
When scheduling a room, please be prepared to provide the following information:
- Event name
- Purpose of the event
- Number of attendees
- Whether there will be any food service requirements, and what they might be
- Whether the event is open to the public
- Special set up or audio-visual requests
- Parking requirements
- Finalized event agenda/schedule
- Names of any speakers or presenters
For regularly scheduled classes, please contact the Registrar's Office at (206) 296-5855.
STATUSES--and how they affect what you schedule
When you make a request for facilities from CES, you receive a confirmation of any facilities you have requested, along with the dates and times of the bookings for the different facilities. At the end of the information on each booking, there is a "status" assigned to each facility. There are several booking statuses, and each has its own meaning. Changes to your reservations have different deadlines, depending on the status type.
The statuses are:
Confirmed: This status indicates that the booking is in a facility that will require some support from CES--equipment, labor to set up or tear down equipment, etc. This is the most common status in multi-purpose rooms such as Campion Ballroom, Casey Commons, or Student Center 160.
Confirmed--No Set Up Required: If a your program is booked with this status, then CES is assuming that no support at all is needed from any Seattle University providers for that meeting/event. The room will be unlocked for your program and is provided as-is.
Confirmed--NSR with Food If your program receives a reservation from CES with this status, it means that you have been scheduled into a facility that is determined to be "as-is" in set up, that you are going to be requesting catering from Bon Appétit for the program, that the room has a permanent location for food service to set up the catering, and that CES will not need to provide any support (tables, equipment, set up, etc.) for the program.
Confirmed--NSR with Food/Tech If your program receives a reservation from CES with this status, it means that you have been scheduled into a facility that is determined to be "as-is" in regard to furniture and event equipment set up. Programs with this status assume you are going to be requesting catering from Bon Appétit, plus audio-visual or technical support from ITCS for the program, but that CES will not need to provide any support (tables, equipment, set up, etc.) for the program.
Confirmed--NSR with Tech If your program receives a reservation from CES with this status, it means that you have been scheduled into a facility that is determined to be "as-is" in regard to furniture and event equipment set up. Programs with this status assume you are going to be requesting audio-visual or technical support from ITCS for the program, but that CES will not need to provide any support (tables, equipment, set up, etc.) for the program.
Event Hold If your program receives a confirmation from CES that shows a status of "Event Hold," it means that CES is missing some vital information concerning the program that prevents us from terming it a Confirmed reservation. You should contact CES as soon as possible to provide the missing information. In order to ensure that facilities will continue to be reserved for your program, you must ensure that your status has been upgraded from Event Hold by at least ten (10) business days prior to its start. In cases where you are requesting a facility or facilities for a number of dates when your ultimate goal is to secure only one (for example, if you want a particular speaker, so set aside a number of dates while the speaker's calendar is checked), then you are allowed to reserve up to three dates for ten business days from the date that the request is made. CES will contact you at the end of that time to request that you secure one of the dates and release the other two.
Hold This is a status used internally by CES to set aside a facility so that CES can do set up or tear down. It may show up on your reservation to indicate that the room is set aside, but the assumption is that your program will not be taking place during any times that have a Hold status.
Pending THIS STATUS MEANS THAT THE ROOM IS NOT YET CONFIRMED FOR YOU. This is usually used for classrooms, since we often must put in reservations before classes are confirmed by the Registrar. In the case of classrooms, then once the Registrar releases the classrooms for non-class scheduling, CES will contact you either to confirm the room you had on Pending status, or to provide you with another space instead. This status is also used to "wait list" reservations. For example, if a program has a room on Event Hold while it is trying to figure out when its speaker can come to campus, and you want the room in question if that program decides to release the space, a booking will be put on Pending status for you until the program with the Event Hold makes a decision. It is important to note that Pending status reservations can be booked over in our system by anything, so it is critical to confirm these as soon as possible. It is also important not to make involved plans for the facility until you have a confirmed reservation.
DEADLINES FOR CHANGES TO RESERVATIONS WITH DIFFERENT STATUSES
At least ten (10) business days' notice is required:
--to request that a Confirmed event be scheduled (get "on the books"). You may continue to make changes to confirmed events after they are on the books until three business days prior to the event.
--to provide all information necessary to change a status of Event Hold to a confirmed status
--to request that a Confirmed--No Set Up Required, Confirmed--NSR with Food, Confirmed--NSR with Food/Tech, or Confirmed--NSR with Tech event be changed to a status of Confirmed. If you wish make such changes to your meeting or event so that it will require CES support when previously it did not, then you must contact the Conference & Event Services office by no later than ten (10) business days prior to the start of your meeting/event to let us know of this change.
At least seven (7) business days' notice is required:
--to request audio-visual equipment or support from ITCS.
At least three (3) business days' notice is required:
--for any programs with a status of "Confirmed" to request any changes in their meetings, events, or conferences. These changes include but are not limited to:
- Requests for equipment
- Changes in number of attendees
- Changes in facility set up
- Requests for additional audio-visual requirements (equipment and/or operation). Final requests for audio-visual equipment must be made by at least seven (7) days prior to the event.
Changes requested after this deadline may not be able to be accommodated based on required space changes, other events happening, staffing levels, and equipment availability.
IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT SCHEDULING FACILITIES NOT THROUGH CONFERENCE & EVENT SERVICES (CES):
CES is not the only entity on campus from which you may reserve facilities. There are self-scheduling units in the Lemieux Library & McGoldrick Learning Commons as well as in the James C. Pigott Pavilion for Leadership; other departments such as Fine Arts also schedule some facilities within their areas. If you schedule any facility through someone other than CES but need CES support--equipment, set up, etc.--then you must let CES know of the reservation by no later than ten (10) business days prior to the event, even if you have a reservation confirmation from the other entity. The vast majority of these other reservations do not require CES support, and we must rely on our customers to let us know when support *is* needed. We are very happy to provide that support as long as the reservation is brought to our attention within the deadline.
WHY THESE DEADLINES ARE IN PLACE
Ten (10) business days
It may seem as if ten business days is a great deal of notice; however, put into context, it becomes clear that the requirement is needed. Between fall of 2009 and fall of 2010. CES provided support for 52,000 bookings (a "booking" being any facility or room on campus) for 8,000 reservations. This represents a 40% increase in the number of reservations since 2006 that required an Event Coordinator to support them, yet our number of Event Coordinators has not increased.
8,000 bookings means that each of our three Event Coordinators is responsible for roughly 250 reservations per month (and it is important to note that a "reservation" will often have more than one facility to support within the reservation). The Event Coordinator has to get in contact with the client, get a response, create one or more diagrams, get the diagram(s) approved by the client or make changes and resubmit for approval, create one or more internal work orders to reserve equipment from our inventory and get labor assigned to deliver and set it up, and submit final diagrams and work orders to be carried out. When these steps are considered (and multiplied by more than 250 per month per Event Coordinator) the need for a deadline it is more understandable.
Please note that if you call for a "Confirmed--No Set Up Required" booking, such as a meeting in a room that requires no support from CES or any of our partners, we can often do that for events even the next day, pending availability. The longer time requirement is for any program that will require CES staff to make arrangements on your behalf.
Three (3) business days
Conference & Event Services tries very hard to be excellent stewards of the university's resources. We have created staffing and labor models that allow us to serve our customers just about every day of the year, with the exceptions of those few days in December when the entire university closes. CES is usually staffed from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays, and from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays, but we work outside those hours pretty consistently to serve our customers--and we're truly happy to do that, as long as we have notice.
While it may be tempting to think that it is easy to make last-minute adjustments "because it is just one small request," the unfortunate reality is that a large number of people seem to have that same thought! CES has encountered trouble because of this thinking: we have had to pull labor off of events that had done all their planning and requests on time; it was not fair to allow their support to be eroded because of others' poor planning.
In addition, with the budget crunch that we all have been enduring, CES has not purchased extra equipment (nor would we have anywhere to store it if we did). Were we to allow customers to continue to rely on being able to make last-minute requests, we would be allowing them to fail when we no longer had the equipment they needed within our inventory. As the number of events increases, and we continue to schedule more facilities more times per day, the inventory management becomes critical. We ask that customers give us at least those three business days so that if we do not have what you need in our inventory, we have time to rent it for you from our vendors.
CES wants very much to provide excellent and seamless support to our customers, and we want our customers to have events go smoothly and successfully. With advance planning and teamwork, we can work together to ensure that your events go just the way you want!